This morning PetRescue emailed their supporters their Christmas solicitation. It features a dog names Billy.
Because a gift or donation to PetRescue helps pets just like Billy.
Just a few months ago Billy was in urgent need of a home - it was mid-covid and his owner had to return overseas.
Billy’s owner was stuck. They had tried many options but still could not find him a home. With only dead ends, they reached out to PetRescue in hope.
Because PetRescue brings pets and people together.
We supported Billy’s owner, then listed Billy for adoption on PetRescue. This allowed Georgia to find Billy - now Georgia will be celebrating Christmas with love in her eyes!
“Billy is amazing. We love him SO much - he has made our lives so much better. His funny personality constantly makes us laugh. He loves humans, even my Dad! They seem to have a weird special bond. We are in love with him!”
Christmas is just days away, and there are 4,035 pets, just like Billy, wishing for a new home. To bring happiness to their humans and to receive it back. A simple gift; one that brings us pure joy.
Can you make a donation to help pets this Christmas? To help us bring animals and people together to create joy and save lives?
Your gift of hope will mean pets just like Billy will have the best chance possible.
And December's intensive campaign targeting the supporters of genuine rescue groups of course doesn't end there. PetRescue's paid team of PR/marketers, fundraisers and professional communicators have had an entire month to repeatedly solicit donations from the exact same pet lovers who rescue groups have served and supported all year long.
But apart from giving PetRescue stories they can use for their fundraising, what's the harm in PetRescue running a pet-flipping program in Home2Home? Sure, selling pets you've never met online for hundreds of dollars, on behalf of their owners who don't want them any more, is ethically lacking. And bypassing the knowledge and grassroots effectiveness of local volunteer rescue groups, for gumtree-style, online advertising seems to run counter to PetRescue's claim that they support rescue groups in their work... but what harm can it really do?
This is where things get dangerous for every rescue who still lists on the PetRescue website.
Every rescue knows food and resource guarding is very treatable and manageable if - and only if - that dog is placed responsibly, with guidance and support from a knowledgable rescue group. PetRescue have not even met this dog. They've not formally assessed her, or had her living in their homes, or paid money to a reputable trainer to work with her to overcome her fears and worries... they've simply listed this dog with a known aggressive history, on their website - while masquerading as a rescue group themselves - and will almost certainly handball any future behaviour problems to someone else.
What's more, they've listed this large breed dog with a known aggression history and an owner who for whatever reason feels like they can't keep her as a 'Huge teddy bear!' What could possibly go wrong.
PetRescue creating a fake rescue group - Home2Home - is the latest in a series of decisions which seem to be entirely about bypassing and devaluing genuine rescue groups, in a blind rush to generate funds to keep paying PetRescue staff.
If you're a rescue group who is still lending your rescue group's reputation the PetRescue website by featuring on the site and listing pets, it is no longer just about losing funds to a sophisticated fundraising engine.... but you are now endorsing sight-unseen, online sales of known aggressive animals. And if this very, very bad idea goes wrong, all associated rescues are going to find their judgement up for public scrutiny. Why didn't rescue stand up and demand their self-appointed, national representative organisation, act responsibly when it comes to public safety?